Telecoms players back 5G research centre

09 October 2012 |


The University of Surrey in the UK has secured £35 million in funding for a 5G research centre through both state and industry funding.

Construction of the centre is being supported by £11.6 million from the UK government and £24 million from a consortium including Huawei, Samsung, Telefonica Europe, Fujitsu Laboratories Europe, Rohde & Schwarz and AIRCOM International.

The project is designed to stimulate significant expansion in UK telecoms research, development and innovation and the provision broadband mobile internet services, with significant downstream benefits for economic growth, according to the university.

"Although the UK played an active role in the creation of 2G (GSM) cellular standards, it has increasingly fallen behind in succeeding generations 3G and 4G standards. The University’s industry partners have identified this proposal as the single biggest opportunity for the UK to regain a world leading position in the development of 5G technologies and for the development of vibrant businesses around the technologies,” said Professor Rahim Tafazolli, head of the University of Surrey’s Centre for Communication Systems Research (CCSR).

Funding for the project was partly driven by the growth of the global telecoms industry, valued at $2.1 trillion per annum and 6% of world GDP. An increasing hunger for data traffic, which is estimated to increase 1,000 times by 2020, is also creating a need to look beyond 4G technology.

The 5G centre will attract international telecoms companies to conduct research and development of new 5G standards in the UK, and will also link to a satellite communications developments as part of the UK government’s Connected Digital Economy.